Just months after the attack on Pearl Harbor, flying in 16 B-25s, 80 men, two of them from Arlington, sent Japan a message: Don't mess with the United States.
Now, 73 years later, a congressional medal commemorates the surprise bombing run by Doolittle's Tokyo Raiders, and the designer of the handsome gold piece is Chris Costello of Arlington.
"This was a unique privilege to serve my country as an artist, and to help give these men the honor they deserve, Costello wrote following an interview April 20.”I gave special attention to every detail of my original drawing to make sure it was exactly what they wanted."
The 56-year-old is referring to the United States Mint, for which he has worked since 2010 as a contract artist, and to a variety of groups dedicated to keeping alive the spirit of the original raiders, dwindled now to two.
Two of the members who flew over Tokyo were Arlington High School graduates Eugene F. McGurl and Howard A. Sessler. McGurl was honored in 2009 when the square at Brattle and Summer named for him was dedicated.
Public celebrations of the medal's unveiling include two that have occurred -- on April 15 in Washington, D.C., and three days later, on the anniversary of Doolittle's raid, at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. A third is set for Saturday, April 25, at the USS Hornet Museum in Alameda, Calif. The Hornet is the aircraft carrier from which Doolittle, an Alameda native, launched the raid.
The medal is the highest civilian honor Congress can give on behalf of the American people.
After a slow start caused by the unrelenting winter, parking bans and rehearsal cancellations, Arlington Friends of the Drama opened the hit musical "Nine" on April 10. The show closes Sunday.
In this Tony Award-winning show, a famous film director is suffering from a creative block and personal difficulties with his wife, his mistress, the actress who serves as his muse, as well as his female producer. A musical adaptation of the semiautobiographical Federico Fellini film "8½," this theater piece tells the story of celebrated film director Guido Contini as he is pursued by hordes of beautiful women, all clamoring to be loved by him and him alone.
Some of the cast >> April 10 through 12, 17 through 19 and 24 through 26; Friday and Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sundays at 4 p.m. Tickets are available online at www.afdtheatre.org or by calling the box office at 781-646-5922. Tickets are $25. Discounts for groups of 10 or more.
Arlington resident Jennifer Condon is directing and choreographing the production. A self-identified feminist, Condon had always loved the music of this show (by Maury Yeston, who won both Tony and Drama Desk Awards for the music and lyrics), but initially wondered whether she wanted to tackle a show about a man who appears on the surface to be a manipulative womanizer.
UPDATED, April 25: Vision 2020 is working with Town Meeting members in several precincts to coordinate meetings for residents to learn about the warrant articles and discuss the issues with their meeting members.
Precincts 12, 14, 17, 19 and 21will have combined precinct meeting to review the upcoming warrant and discuss issues at the Senior Center, 27 Maple St., on Sunday, April 26, from 1 to 3 p.m.
Precincts 7, 8, 9 and 10 will have combined precinct meeting to review the upcoming warrant and discuss issues at the Senior Center on Sunday, April 26, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m.
On the go? Can't decide what to do? Here's help (or more decisions to make) -- five things to consider doing this weekend, as suggested by Cambridge Day.
Yes, the website, a YourArlington partner, focuses on Cambridge, but its suggested events encompass an area within your reach. See the suggestions here >>>
100th anniversary marks survivors' successes
UPDATED, April 24: What if your childhood was snatched from you by a murderous regime -- as around you whole families were slain? Positive thinking alone would not be powerful enough to pull you through.
What would? Who can say what factors made Zaven Mirakian, orphan of the Armenian genocide, turn out to be John Peter Mirak, a prominent business success of 20th-century Arlington? His son Robert offers signposts to this transformation.
A century after Ottoman Turkish armies killed more than a million Armenians, YourArlington interviewed Mirak about his parents -- and his book, which provides insight about who they are.
You know the name from passing the widespread Mass. Ave. car dealership as you head toward the Heights. The Chevrolet or Hyundai ahead of you in traffic may bear the name atop its license plate.
Providing a deeper history is Genocide Survivors, Community Builders: The Family of John and Artemis Mirak (Armenian Cultural Foundation, 2014).
Bob Mirak, Ph.D., wrote the book to bear witness to times both foul and fair that his family has experienced. It begin with the horrors of Armenia during World War I events that later were called a "genocide."
Save Our Wetlands, the coalition that opposes the development plan for the 17-acre Mugar site along Route 2 in East Arlington, is calling for volunteers to hold signs on Lake Street on the evenings of Monday, April 27, and the morning of Wednesday, April 29.
The call follows an organizational meeting April 15 at 137 Herbert Road to form a steering committee and plan a series of educational forums.
Former Selectman Clarissa Rowe is helping the coalition. Read the group's announcement below:
UPDATED, April 24: Arlington's annual Town Meeting for 2015 is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. Monday, April 27, at Town Hall.
Elected representatives of the town's 21 precincts deliberate and vote on issues brought to them by town officials and by citizens. They do so on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8 to 11 p.m., until votes on all warrant articles -- the meeting's agenda items -- are completed.
Arlington Community Media (ACMi) plans to air Town Meeting live on the Government channel until the session ends, with replays throughout the week. Visit ACMi's website for full Town Meeting coverage, including video-on-demand of Town Meeting and warrant article proponent segments, at acmi.tv.
Because of the generosity of an anonymous donor, Arlington High and middle-school students can receive a full scholarship for the July Japan trip offered to one who otherwise would not be able to participate, schools Superintendent Kathleen Bodie reported Wednesday, April 22.
Students who are interested in applying for the scholarship are required to write an essay about why they want to participate in the trip and what they expect to benefit.
The deadline for submitting the essay has been extended to Tuesday, April 28.